October 24th, 2008
09:25 AM ET

Why Barack Obama is winning

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/10/24/art.obama.1023.jpg]
Joe Klein

Barack Obama has prospered in this presidential campaign because of the steadiness of his temperament and the judicious quality of his decision-making. They are his best-known qualities. The most important decision he has made — the selection of a running mate — was done carefully, with an exhaustive attention to detail and contemplation of all the possible angles. Two months later, as John McCain's peremptory selection of Governor Sarah Palin has come to seem a liability, it could be argued that Obama's quiet selection of Joe Biden defined the public's choice in the general-election campaign.

But not every decision can be made so carefully. There are a thousand instinctive, instantaneous decisions that a presidential candidate has to make in the course of a campaign — like whether to speak his mind to a General Petraeus — and this has been a more difficult journey for Obama, since he's far more comfortable when he's able to think things through. "He has learned to trust his gut," an Obama adviser told me. "He wasn't so confident in his instincts last year. It's been the biggest change I've seen in him."


Filed under: Barack Obama • Joe Biden • Joe Klein • John McCain • Raw Politics • Sarah Palin
soundoff (9 Responses)
  1. Susan

    HOPE will always overcome HATE and FEAR! Obama for America!

    October 24, 2008 at 11:35 am |
  2. Maung

    Why OBAMA is winning? very simple. He lied more than McCain.
    Every politician lies. Whoever lies more win the race.

    Maung, Indiana.

    October 24, 2008 at 11:29 am |
  3. David W., Florida

    Each day I'm more convinced that Obama is what America needs.

    October 24, 2008 at 10:58 am |
  4. darren

    I think that obama made a good pick when he picked joe biden as his vp pick we need change in this contury obama is the person for the job.

    October 24, 2008 at 10:14 am |
  5. Ryan Field

    According to the polls, Barack Obama is winning for a slew of reasons, one of which is that he's an excellent campaign machine. But no one polled me, and this registered Democrat from the Phildadelphia burbs in PA just mailed in an absentee ballot witha vote for John McCain last weekend after Colin Powell's endorsement. It was just too reminiscent of the primaries, when Hillary was winning swing states in huge numbers and Richarson was endorsing Obama the same day. Not Fair!!

    I was leaning toward Obama, but blog posts like this and the media coverage in general, turned me to McCain...without regret.

    Obama looks good as a win though; his chances are excellent and I think he has the potential to be a great President. But if he doesn't win, and the election does go to McCain because people like me voted against the party this time, I trulty believe Barack Obama has the elite media to thank for his loss.

    October 24, 2008 at 10:13 am |
  6. ken

    Obviously a fantastic communicator in public settings, the American public responds to such talent with great favor. However, the length of his campaign and the amount of money spent on his campaign has to be accounted for. Non-partisan studies concerning press coverage showing a large percentage of media favor is also an advantage. Comparing apples to apples with policy, the American public has shown disfavor. As long as he can keep the focus on someone else, anyone else, wheter it be Bush, Palin, or positive endorsements, he can keep his own ratings favorable.

    October 24, 2008 at 9:54 am |
  7. john

    Obama is up because the main streem media is one sided, he lies, he tells you what you want to here, but flip flops his possitions, because hes black, and no one in the media will attack him, the voters are nieve democrats who would vote for mickey mouse, he hangs around with known terrorist, he wants to socialias the income of americans, socialias the media, ban hand guns, kill unborn children, ruin american values like same sex marrage, his supporters are criminals and dont care what happens to this country, his pastor fot 20 years condems america, he has a maxisist form of gov. and thats why he is up, but going to lose.

    October 24, 2008 at 9:52 am |
  8. YR

    Excellent artcle.

    October 24, 2008 at 9:40 am |
  9. Cindy

    I wish all of you left wing liberals would tell the truth! Obama is not winning! In the polls there are things called margin of errors and also there are the undecided voters! So therefore that wipes out any lead that Obama may have and puts him and McCain dead even! Why not tell the truth!? You all already think he has it in the bag but you are misleading the public! Get real and stop with your left wing agenda. This race is not over by far!


    October 24, 2008 at 9:30 am |